A high school football game can quickly get out of hand when one team is making turnovers.
And, that was the case last Friday night as Waurika rolled to a 64-14 victory over Carnegie on the Wildcats’ home field.
Carnegie made six turnovers in only one half of play and Waurika returned two of the miscues for scores to propel the Eagles’ to their third straight win to start the season.
Waurika will face its biggest test of the season thus far tomorrow night when Snyder comes to Cy Sloan Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
The Cyclones are ranked 10th in Class B and scored a big 34-24 victory over Class C juggernaut Tipton. Snyder is 4-0 on the year.
Waurika got its scoring parade started in the first quarter as Colton Bryant scored on a six-yard run. The two-point conversion failed leaving Waurika in front, 6-0, with 7:23 to play in the first quarter.
The Eagles got two more scores before the end of the first quarter on touchdown passes.
The first TD pass came as quarterback Turner Mora found Hunter Wesberry for a 27-yard scoring pass. Mora ran for the two points and Waurika held a 14-0 advantage with 3:57 left in the first quarter.
Waurika picked up the first of four interceptions on the night on Carnegie’s next drive as Bryant picked off the pass and returned it to the Wildcat 12.
In just two plays the Eagles covered the short distance with Mora finding Bryant on a 10-yard touchdown pass. The two-point conversion failed, but with 2:09 still to play in the first quarter Waurika had put together a 20-0 lead.
The Wildcats tried to stay up with the Eagles as quarterback Xavier Nesahkluah hit Kaden Akins on an 11-yard touchdown pass overcoming two penalties on the drive. Nesahkluah tossed the two-point conversion to Andrew Cano and Carnegie had narrowed the gap to 20-8 with 10:53 left before the half.
On the ensuing kickoff, Mora took the ball at the Eagle 30 and raced 75 yards for the score. The try for two points failed, but Waurika had increased the lead to 26-8 at the 10:42 mark of the second quarter.
Carnegie answered with another score on the Wildcats’ next drive – a six-play, 69-yard drive. Nesahkluah threw his second touchdown pass of the game – this time to Cano – from 10 yards out. The try for two failed, but with 8:22 left before intermission Waurika’s lead was cut to 26-14.
This is when the wheels began to fall off for the Wildcats and the Eagles pounced on the opportunity to put the game away.
On Waurika’s first play after the kickoff, Zac Brown broke loose for a 55-yard scoring run and after Mora added the two-point conversion Waurika increased the lead to 34-14 with 8:06 left in the quarter.
Waurika’s defense got in on the scoring onslaught just 21 seconds later as Wesberry picked off an errant Wildcat pass and raced 36 yards on the return for the score. Bryant ran for the two points and Waurika was now in front, 42-14, with 7:45 to play before the half.
Another Carnegie turnover resulted in Waurika’s next score. Gatlin Black scooped up a Wildcat bobble and took it to pay dirt from 40 yards out. Mora ran for the two-point conversion and the Eagles led, 50-14, with 4:45 still to play in the half.
Wesberry’s second interception of the night set up the next Eagle score. Mora got his second score of the game on a 41-yard rushing touchdown. Bryant ran for the two points and the Eagles had a 58-14 lead with 2:27 left in the quarter.
Another turnover by the Wildcats sealed the mercy-rule fate for Carnegie. Waurika recovered another fumble to give the Eagles the ball at the 23-yard line.
A couple of plays later, Brown made his way into the end zone from one yard out. The run for two points failed, but Waurika had a 64-14 lead with just 57 seconds left in the half.
Carnegie’s last drive of the night was ended in the final seconds when Kevin Garcia got another interception and ran out the clock on the return.
“We challenged our team all week in practice and they stepped up to the challenge,” said head coach Joe Allen after the game. “This was the best half of football we have played this season.”
Working with a short field much of the night did not produce very many impressive statistics. Brown was the leading rusher with 82 yards on just five carries. Mora was effective in the passing game with four completions on just six attempts for 71 yards.
EAGLE FLIGHTS: The 64 points scored is the second highest total by a Waurika squad since the Eagles began eight-man play in 2012….The 64 points is tied for ninth highest number of points scored in school history….Waurika has not scored more than 64 points in a game since putting 80 on Fox in 2016…Carnegie has never beaten Waurika in three meetings with the Eagles….The 50-point margin of victory eclipses the 49-point winning margin against Carnegie in the first meeting between the schools in 1996…The 3-0 start is the best for Waurika since 2015, but it is only the second time since 1997 the Eagles have started a season with three straight wins….Waurika has started 3-0 only 14 times in 99 years of football….The Waurika defense has scored at least one touchdown in all three games this season….The 14 points scored by Carnegie are the first points allowed by the Waurika defense this season….Waurika has ended each of its first three games at halftime.
Game in Figures
First Downs 7 9
Yards Rushing 21-177 17-34
Yards Passing 71 141
Passes 4-6 9-21
Passes Int. By 4 0
Fumbles Lost 1-0 2-2
Punts 0-0 1-24
Penalties 5-45 6-50
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Waurika 20 44 x x–64
Carnegie 0 14 x x–14
WAURIKA – Colton Bryant 6 run (run failed), 8:23, 1st Quarter
WAURIKA – Hunter Wesberry 27 pass from Turner Mora (Mora run), 3:57, 1st Quarter
WAURIKA – Bryant 10 pass from Mora (run failed), 2:09, 1st Quarter
CARNEGIE – Kaden Adkins 12 pass from Xavier Nesahkluah (Andrew Cano pas from Nesahkluah), 10:53, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 75 kickoff return (run failed), 10:42, 2nd Quarter
CARNEGIE – Cano 10 pass from Nesahkluah) (pass failed), 8:22, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Zac Brown 55 run (Mora run), 8:06, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Wesberry 36 interception return (Bryant run), 7:45, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Gatlin Black 40 fumble return (Mora run), 4:45, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Mora 41 run (Bryant run), 2:27, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA – Brown 1 run (run failed), :57.6, 2nd Quarter
WAURIKA: Rushing – Brown 5-82, Mora 8-63, Kevin Garcia 4-22, Bryant 4-10; Passing – Mora 4-6-71-0; Receiving – Wesberry 2-57, Bryant 1-10, Edwin Garcia 1-4.